Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

James Lasdun's memoir of being stalked, Give Me Everything You Have, has provoked considerable controversy. Whilst the quality of the writing is widely praised, some critics object to the way Lasdun documents in unsparing detail his experiences without taking any account of the stalker's apparent mental health problems. There are ethical and conceptual problems with Lasdun's approach, but side-stepping medical knowledge and relying on what we might call common sense help Lasdun to find ways to interpret his stalker's actions as meaningful and human. I suggest three interlinked implications concerning: medicalization, stigma, and the relationship between ethics and scientific knowledge.

Original publication




Journal article


J Med Humanit

Publication Date





287 - 302


Ethics, Expert knowledge, Medicalization, Science and religion, Stigma, Humans, London, Medicalization, Mental Disorders, Morals, Reading, Religion and Science, Social Stigma, Writing